Politics in the Urban Periphery: Citizen-Led Expansion and Informality at the Edges of India's Cities

41 Pages Posted: 11 Sep 2023 Last revised: 30 Jan 2024

See all articles by Adam Auerbach

Adam Auerbach

American University Business Law Review

Tanu Kumar

University of California, Berkeley; College of William & Mary - Global Research Institute and Public Policy Progrsm

Date Written: 2023

Abstract

Why are some privately developed neighbourhoods on the outskirts of India’s cities incorporated into municipal governance while others are not? And what are the consequences of uneven incorporation for public service provision? This paper explores these questions in the context of peripheral private developments in India. Peripheral private developments are planned neighbourhoods at the urban-rural edge that frequently exhibit informalities stemming from weak or absent zoning approval. First, Adam and Tanu explore how variation in authorization by the city shapes neighbourhood access to basic public services. Next, they show how collective action among residents influences patterns of neighbourhood-level authorization. Their study draws on qualitative interviews and neighbourhood-level data collected from the urban development authority in Jaipur, a rapidly growing city of four million people. The authors interviewed neighbourhood leaders across 25 of Jaipur’s cooperative housing society colonies—a common type of peripheral private development. These interviews with local leaders, as well as interviews with officials and data collected from the urban development authority, provide novel insights into the political economy of these proliferating yet understudied spaces.

Keywords: urbanization, local governance, informality, service provision,India

Suggested Citation

Auerbach, Adam and Kumar, Tanu, Politics in the Urban Periphery: Citizen-Led Expansion and Informality at the Edges of India's Cities ( 2023). Governance and Local Development Institute Working Paper No. 63, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4560168 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4560168

Adam Auerbach

American University Business Law Review ( email )

4300 Nebraska Avenue, N.W., Capital Hall Suite 11
Washington, DC 20016
United States

Tanu Kumar (Contact Author)

University of California, Berkeley ( email )

310 Barrows Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720
United States

College of William & Mary - Global Research Institute and Public Policy Progrsm ( email )

224 Sherwood Forest
Williamsburg, VA VA 23185
United States

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